2001 tampa strip

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The spaceship on the roof is a Futuro house, and one of a few remaining examples of the pre-fabricated homes that hit the American market the same year Apollo 11 landed on the moon. Its creator did not have lap dances in mind. The Futuro was supposed to be the house of the future.

2001 tampa strip

One of them even did become the home of a Tampa Bay retiree and her great granddaughter. Another of the architectural rarities, somehow, became the home of full-nude dancers. The full story of how that happened went untold for decades.

The Futuros were deed in the s by Matti Suuronen, a Finnish architect and national team volleyball player. Cheap 2001 tampa strip produce, fiberglass saucers were soon floated as a housing solution. Buyers could get them fully furnished, or just order the shell.

The entrance was a button-operated, retractable door hatch.

2001 tampa strip

Futuro enthusiast Simon Robson, 61, who painstakingly documents the history and locations of remaining Futuros on thefuturohouse. Robson, a Texas-based, sci-fi fan who works in IT, said he spends most of his free time tracking down Futuros since discovering the phenomenon in No one knows how many were made, but Robson has tallied 67 surviving houses around the world.

2001 tampa strip

A man in New Zealand recently bought one to convert into an Airbnb. An artist in London brings his restored Futuro around the city for pop up art installations. A graffiti-coated shell of an orange Futuro in Texas is popular with traveling Instagrammers. At least 13 others were destroyed, Robson says.

Some may have been used for target practice. Others were demolished or fell apart from old age. In Florida, two remain. One is in Pensacola Beach. The other is the VIP room at the Odyssey. A plastic industrial company in Finland sold the homes before 2001 tampa strip opened in other countries. He plopped a display-model saucer down at SR in Clearwater, now home to a Grow Financial branch. Futuros were not a hit with homebuyers.

Gwendolyn Zerby was approaching her 70s and had trouble moving around. 2001 tampa strip wanted to feel safe. She had it delivered to the southwest corner of Semmes and Juneau streets in Tampa, back when the Sulphur Springs neighborhood still had dirt ro and orange groves. Zerby kept the included shag carpeting. She showered in the tiny bathroom, prepared snacks in the square kitchenette and stored her belongings under the cushions of the wraparound couch. The only thing she brought with her was her favorite La-Z-Boy recliner and her dog, Spud.

Bonita Flora spent hours in that spaceship watching Guiding Light with her grandmother.

2001 tampa strip

A newspaper article said traffic often slowed on the street. Some stood on top of their cars. Chrissey Magee was a little girl when her great-grandmother Zerby died, but she remembers eating candy necklaces inside the Futuro.

2001 tampa strip

Her friends asked if her great-grandmother was an alien. After Zerby died ina couple moved in. One of them was an Ybor City drag performer known as Candy Kiss who 2001 tampa strip the space to sew costumes and throw frequent parties. When the retractable door stopped retracting, they built a fence to keep intruders out. When they left for California, it sat empty. By the end of the s, the Futuro was old and covered in graffiti.

Deemed a fire hazard and public nuisance, the city demolished it. So how did a second of 2001 tampa strip extremely rare architectural oddities end up in Tampa, on the roof of a strip club? Petersburg Times in The first Futuro in the United States was a model displayed in the Philadelphia airport that arrived in Matassini died inbut his son, Nick Matassini, told the Tampa Bay Times his father acquired the club after the space ship was already on the roof.

And it was his father and 2001 tampa strip partners who opened the Odyssey in in a nondescript Tampa building that was formerly the Shangri La Lounge. The Futuro that landed on the roof was the display model his father had used in Clearwater. It took two attempts to hoist the ship onto the roof, Bruce DeLong said.

When Sims Crane first lifted the saucer, gusts of wind caused the Futuro to smash into the side of the club. After repairs, they succeeded on a calmer day. Bruce DeLong said his dad, a flashy guy who loved women and partying, was finally making big money with his spaceship club, until mobsters pressured him and his business partners to sell.

One of those partners, Bernard J. Lechner, 85, confirmed it was Jerry DeLong who was responsible for the spaceship. : Tampa strip clubs and the battle to bare it all: How the lap dance was outlawed 20 years ago. Newspaper for a new club named first appeared inand the first ad featuring the spaceship appeared in Records show that Rod-Man Inc.

Jerry Delong ended up working as a used tire salesman for Goodyear. These days, the spaceship is entered via a carpeted staircase from the first floor of the club.

2001 tampa strip

Black lace curtains hang over leather booths that wrap around the mirrored walls. The ceiling is adorned with glow-in-the-dark constellations and a disco ball. Times staff writer Christopher Spata and Times senior researcher Caryn Baird contributed to this report. Correction : 2001 tampa strip story originally stated that Jerry DeLong is He is Subscribe Manage my subscription Activate my subscription Log in Log out. Regions Tampa St. Letters to the Editor Submit a Letter.

Investigations Narratives Pulitzer Winners. Connect with us. About us. Obituaries Homes Jobs Classifieds. Careers Advertise Legal Contact. Log in. Manage my subscription Activate my subscription Log out. That spaceship on top of a Tampa strip club? It once was the house of the future. By Gabrielle Calise. Published Jul.

2001 tampa strip

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